You may run into problems with your electrical installation because of the recent updates to the National Electric Code (NEC). The NEC’s modifications are in place due to the changes in technology. Without knowledge of these amendments, you could violate some codes without even knowing it.
You may want to consider consulting Arlington electricians to help clear up the confusion. Here are some tips to help you pass an electrical inspection.
Double-Check Your Current Circuit Breaker
Understanding your electrical protection goes a long way. You might want to check the type of breaker you’re using right now. Try to see if it’s functioning according to its design and if it follows the NEC.
Standard Circuit Break – Standard circuit breakers work better to protect wiring and equipment than to prevent fires or protect people from harm. Only a few areas remain where you can use such circuit breakers, one of which is for large appliances.
Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter – Ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCIs) function to protect people from harm in spaces with small appliances and with the presence of water. The National Electric Code requires the use of GFCIs in kitchens, bathrooms, and outdoors.
There are violations in the use of GFCIs in crawl spaces, storage or work areas, garages, sump pumps, and wet bars (within 6 ft. of a sink). Please keep in mind that GFCIs need to be accessible for reset. Refrain from installing this type of circuit breaker in a space without an access panel, like in the ceiling.
Arc Fault Circuit Interrupter – We usually find arc fault circuit interrupters (AFCIs) in spaces where appliance cords tend to be crumpled, pinched, or chewed by pets. This type of circuit breaker helps prevent fires. Previously required only in bedroom circuits, all living areas now need AFCI protection according to the National Electric Code.
AFCIs function to detect an arcing condition, which a standard circuit breaker may fail to detect until after a fire happens. It’s not just new construction that needs AFCI protection; at least not anymore. Spaces with replaced, modified, or extended branch-circuit wiring in existing homes also need this now.
Know the Use of the Right Receptacles
It pays to know the functions of receptacles and which specific areas need these installations. Kids tend to insert objects in electric sockets. This mainly sums up the creation and design of tamper-resistant (TR) receptacles.
The National Electric Code now requires the use of these in all locations, both indoors and outdoors. A TR receptacle, other than being a great invention, is an NEC requirement. So, it’s necessary to install them.
Outdoor receptacles have flat covers, which offer protection when a receptacle isn’t in use. Homeowners tend to overlook extension cords plugged in for an extended period, for example, Christmas lights. Make sure you’re using the right cover for your receptacles.
The National Electric Code defines any area subject to saturation with water or other liquids as a “wet location.” The additions to the code also include another meaning for “damp locations.” If you think the receptacle has high chances of getting wet, get an in-use cover. Also, bear in mind that the NEC requires all 15- and 20-amp receptacles rated as not only tamper-resistant but also weather-resistant if used in wet and damp areas.
Expect Expert Electrical Services
Resolving electrical issues isn't easy; it requires the right tools and updated knowledge. Asking for a licensed expert’s help will ensure a sound solution that keeps your home and place of business safe.
We can identify electrical problems to prevent any harm from coming your way. So as not to compromise your family’s safety, let us do the work.
Call us today for any electrical issues.